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View Full Version : 1974 M-M Cadillac Criterion Ambulance For Sale ***


Steve Lichtman
09-04-2015, 10:07 PM
I received the following e-mail today from my friend, A.J. Heightman, who is interested in selling his Criterion. If you want a GREAT Criterion ambulance at a GREAT price, please act on this quickly. The car is in southern California. I have more pics if you want. Here's the info:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Steve,

I have decided to sell my 1974 Cadillac Criterion Ambulance because I do not have the time to do all the exterior body work that it needs and I would rather invest the money into educational accounts for my two Grandchildren.

I will offer it to an EMS collector at just $9,000 (unequipped) or $11,000 (with all the 1974 era equipment in the ambulance and cabinets (This includes: Vintage BVMs; pristine FERNO Model 30 cot and IV holder; first release Laerdal Suction unit; RICO suction unit; Modura rail with vintage BP cuff & timer units; soft cervical collars; bandages; splints; MAST trousers; 2-channel Motorola “brick” radio and vehicle charger; LIFESAVER Airway kit; Portable O2 setup with rubber Hudson mask and tubing; LIFEPORT O2 unit and tank; vintage/era Motorola radio in cab)

I have over $18,000 invested in it, including extra MARS lights and interior restoration.

All electrical systems items (red lights, sirens {Federal Q & Federal electronic} included) with the exception of the AC unit are fully operational.

Let me know if you know anyone who would like this 7,200 lb. piece of steel EMS history.

A.J.

A.J. Heightman, MPA, EMT-P
Editor-in-Chief, JEMS
aheightman@pennwell.com

Steve Lichtman
09-04-2015, 10:14 PM
FYI, A.J. did give me permission to share his email address, direct-line work phone, and cell phone. I have chosen only to post the email here, but if you want his phone number, message me.

Mike McDonald
09-05-2015, 02:52 PM
Steve: Please refresh my memory on this rig. Was it Kevin Lynch's at one time and does anyone know where it served brand new? THX-MM

Steve Lichtman
09-05-2015, 03:57 PM
Mike, your memory is correct, it was Kevin Lynch's car for a while. It served originally in Stanwood, WA.

Mike McDonald
09-05-2015, 07:29 PM
THANKS STEVE! I received the complete package on it's (very interesting) history from you and have made e-mail contact with "AJ" for an inspection on Monday. Thanks again for your help.

(*) The last 1974 Criterion I owned (briefly) served the Norfolk Ambulance Service in Norfolk, NE., much like this one, it was pristine inside, ran-shifted-steered well, but was a "total rust out" and beyond what I wanted to take on at the time. Had M-M simply put drains in the bottom of the doors and the rockers, (I feel) 95% of the chronic rust issues nearly all of them suffered would have been eliminated. MM

Rick Franklin
09-05-2015, 10:15 PM
Mike, your memory is correct, it was Kevin Lynch's car for a while. It served originally in Stanwood, WA.

Stanwood WA isnt far from me!

Steve Lichtman
09-05-2015, 11:36 PM
THANKS STEVE! I received the complete package on it's (very interesting) history from you and have made e-mail contact with "AJ" for an inspection on Monday. Thanks again for your help.

(*) The last 1974 Criterion I owned (briefly) served the Norfolk Ambulance Service in Norfolk, NE., much like this one, it was pristine inside, ran-shifted-steered well, but was a "total rust out" and beyond what I wanted to take on at the time. Had M-M simply put drains in the bottom of the doors and the rockers, (I feel) 95% of the chronic rust issues nearly all of them suffered would have been eliminated. MMYou're welcome.

He said it needs some body work, but from the photos, it doesn't appear to be a "total rust out". That said, though I've seen a lot of photos of it (and even helped connect Kevin with the second owners in WA), I've never seen the car in person, so I can't say for sure. And you're right about the drains - but then again, I don't think M-M expected "work vehicles" to be around 40+ years later.

James Fischer
09-06-2015, 01:14 AM
Steve,
Ditto Mikes post.....Thank you for all the info !!:thumbsup:

Martin Harvey
09-06-2015, 09:22 AM
I wonderes if this car was still alive! Back in old internet days it was one of the only documented and well pictured cars available on the web. Beautiful Criterion, why asking a low price like this? Is there any bad issues ?

Mike McDonald
09-06-2015, 11:55 AM
I wonderes if this car was still alive! Back in old internet days it was one of the only documented and well pictured cars available on the web. Beautiful Criterion, why asking a low price like this? Is there any bad issues ?

I will be doing a personal inspection of it tomorrow (Monday @1100) at the AMR Offices in San Diego. MM

Peter Grave
09-06-2015, 03:24 PM
I have a friend and Studebaker collector who worked at US Steels Fairless works here in Pennsylvania. Many years ago he told me Studes rust issues were in part because they purchased second line steel for bodies. If I remember right higher carbon content equaled more rust. Among other buyers mentioned by him was Divco equals M-M. Around here (Eastern and Northern Penna.) M-Ms always rusted before Superior or S&S easy to see why. I have a Criterion in the yard came from Central N.J. was retired due to rust has been in yard for ten years and every time I look there is less there.

Mike McDonald
09-07-2015, 08:04 PM
I received the following e-mail today from my friend, A.J. Heightman, who is interested in selling his Criterion. If you want a GREAT Criterion ambulance at a GREAT price, please act on this quickly. The car is in southern California. I have more pics if you want. Here's the info:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Steve,

I have decided to sell my 1974 Cadillac Criterion Ambulance because I do not have the time to do all the exterior body work that it needs and I would rather invest the money into educational accounts for my two Grandchildren.

I will offer it to an EMS collector at just $9,000 (unequipped) or $11,000 (with all the 1974 era equipment in the ambulance and cabinets (This includes: Vintage BVMs; pristine FERNO Model 30 cot and IV holder; first release Laerdal Suction unit; RICO suction unit; Modura rail with vintage BP cuff & timer units; soft cervical collars; bandages; splints; MAST trousers; 2-channel Motorola “brick” radio and vehicle charger; LIFESAVER Airway kit; Portable O2 setup with rubber Hudson mask and tubing; LIFEPORT O2 unit and tank; vintage/era Motorola radio in cab)

I have over $18,000 invested in it, including extra MARS lights and interior restoration.

All electrical systems items (red lights, sirens {Federal Q & Federal electronic} included) with the exception of the AC unit are fully operational.

Let me know if you know anyone who would like this 7,200 lb. piece of steel EMS history.

A.J.

A.J. Heightman, MPA, EMT-P
Editor-in-Chief, JEMS
aheightman@pennwell.com

So here is the report..... I met Mr. Heightman at the AMR-San Diego HQ Shops this morning at 1100 as agreed. While the interior was nice and probably even "over the top" for being (medically) completely era correct equipped... the exterior was almost beyond belief in rust, so much I think we would have had to put Kevin Lynch on "life support" if he were there. Since leaving Kevin's "pampered" caretakership in late 1998, it has only accumulated less than 2000 miles and both the Doctor who Kevin sold it to (who used it for a sign board) and the current owner (the Editor in Chief @JEMS Communications) have put thousands of dollars in to the mechanical part ie; brakes, suspension, tires, exhaust system, electrical issues and several tune-ups (to make it pass CA Smog regulations). 100% of this outside-vendor work was well documented in many file folders of paid receipts. The files also included the copies of the original bid documents to a M-M Dealer, and delivery to the City of Stanwood (WA) with only 23 miles on the odometer.

My first inclination was to totally pass on it. I suggested that he re-post the ad with current pictures as Criterions are well sought after regardless of condition. After some discussion of what it will take us (in hard money costs) to make it show ready, we settled on a much lower figure we both could live with, and (equally) fair. "AJ" was a close friend (as I was to the late James O. "Jim" Page) and only asked if he could still drive it occasionally to local medical equipment related events after it's finished.... that was fine with me.

(*) I will send the pictures we took today to Steve Litchman and Kevin Lynch. They can decide if they want to share them or not. THX-MM

James Fischer
09-07-2015, 08:23 PM
Thank you Mike, for the report....

You saved me a trip and I dont think I am as brave as you when it comes to the dreaded "R" word....
I wish you good luck with it and look forward to seeing pictures.....!!:thumbsup:

PS You will have to bring it to Ripon ;)

Mike McDonald
09-07-2015, 08:37 PM
Jim: Is 1st "outing" will be on the back of a rollback tow truck from AMR's Shop in San Diego to our holding yard in Valley Center, so a piece of rust doesn't fly off and injure a CHP Motor Officer. MM

John ED Renstrom
09-07-2015, 09:26 PM
whats a little rust on a Criterion?

Scott Crittenden
09-07-2015, 10:24 PM
Mike, congrats on another project.

Tim Prieur
09-07-2015, 10:40 PM
Mike, best of success in its rebirth. From everything you post you are passionate about these cars and will be able to breathe life back into it.:applause:

Mike McDonald
09-07-2015, 10:48 PM
Thank you Mike, for the report....

You saved me a trip and I dont think I am as brave as you when it comes to the dreaded "R" word....
I wish you good luck with it and look forward to seeing pictures.....!!:thumbsup:

PS You will have to bring it to Ripon ;)

Jim: We are (VERY) fortunate here to have an excellent "metal crafting" person here who has worked for me over 28 years... mostly on our heavy equipment and trucks, but we throw in an occassional ambulance, police car or fire truck in to the mix to keep it interesting for him! MM

Terry Lange
09-08-2015, 12:10 AM
Congratulations, Mike! As a former Criterion owner ('75), it's nice to see this one going to a good home. I know you and your guys will do a great job with it.

Richard Vyse
09-08-2015, 07:56 AM
You're welcome.

He said it needs some body work, but from the photos, it doesn't appear to be a "total rust out". That said, though I've seen a lot of photos of it (and even helped connect Kevin with the second owners in WA), I've never seen the car in person, so I can't say for sure. And you're right about the drains - but then again, I don't think M-M expected "work vehicles" to be around 40+ years later.

Old photos. As a person who has owned two Criterion's my only regret was to sell the 74 Criterion. Problem was the body needed attention more than I could provide. This was the first Criterion I ever saw when Kevin owned it and it was breath taking. I'm sure Mike will give it a good home.

How about some current pictures Mike....

John ED Renstrom
09-08-2015, 11:57 AM
anyone remember the body number?

Mike McDonald
09-08-2015, 01:57 PM
anyone remember the body number?
ED:
M-M Body # is: 74931, Chassis VIN: 6Z90R4Q245480

Sold to: The City of Stanwood (WA) on October 4, 1974 (with 23 Miles). Original Purchase Price: $19,229.00.

WA State Title Fees: $3.10 Apparently it was <COUNTY EXEMPT> Plated but operated under contract by Gilbertson's Funeral Home for the Stanwood Community Hospital

Seller: Miller-Meteor / Clark Ave., Piqua, OH., 45356
Warranty Service Policy Issued to: Franz Ridgeway Distributor at the Portland
Auto Center / 2936 N.E. Sandy Blvd., Portland, OR., 97232

Ambulance was sold (or gifted) to the Lewis County (WA) Fire Department in 1988, then sold to PCS Member Kevin Lynch on 3-18-97. Kevin sold it to Dr. Mark Tamsen, M.D., on 1-20-99. He used it as a sign board for his Urgent Care Center in San Diego (Mission Beach). Sold to A.J. Heightman on 6-4-2004. Purchased by Western Heavy Equipment on 9-7-15. Worthy of note is that the poor girl has had to sit outside from 1999 thru 2015 (16 Years) in sunny CA but also in salt filled air from Mission Beach and later Oceanside, hence the badly deterioated (beautiful) paint job and graphics from Kevin Lynch's restoration and RUST everywhere. MM

Richard Vyse
09-08-2015, 02:40 PM
ED:
M-M Body # is: 74931, Chassis VIN: 6Z90R4Q245480

Sold to: The City of Stanwood (WA) on October 4, 1974 (with 23 Miles). Original Purchase Price: $19,229.00.

WA State Title Fees: $3.10 Apparently it was <COUNTY EXEMPT> Plated but operated under contract by Gilbertson's Funeral Home for the Stanwood Community Hospital

Seller: Miller-Meteor / Clark Ave., Piqua, OH., 45356
Warranty Service Policy Issued to: Franz Ridgeway Distributor at the Portland
Auto Center / 2936 N.E. Sandy Blvd., Portland, OR., 97232

Ambulance was sold (or gifted) to the Lewis County (WA) Fire Department in 1988, then sold to PCS Member Kevin Lynch on 3-18-97. Kevin sold it to Dr. Mark Tamsen, M.D., on 1-20-99. He used it as a sign board for his Urgent Care Center in San Diego (Mission Beach). Sold to A.J. Heightman on 6-4-2004. Purchased by Western Heavy Equipment on 9-7-15. Worthy of note is that the poor girl has had to sit outside from 1999 thru 2015 (16 Years) in sunny CA but also in salt filled air from Mission Beach and later Oceanside, hence the badly deterioated (beautiful) paint job and graphics from Kevin Lynch's restoration and RUST everywhere. MM

Come on Mike, post those pictures very anxious to see. Surely cannot be as bad as these Criterions.
Another picture of the Criterion when Kevin owned it.

Mike McDonald
09-08-2015, 02:51 PM
I would if I could. MM

Kerry Lange
09-08-2015, 02:52 PM
I'm happy to hear that you're the new owner Mike. Another one saved, and it's going to someone with the resources, talent and funds needed to do the restoration properly!

Steve Lichtman
09-08-2015, 03:45 PM
Congratulations, Mike. I'm glad I could help it get to a good home. (It's the second time I've found this car a good home - I connected Kevin and the WA fire department back in the day).

I was a little concerned with AJ's comment that it needed a lot of exterior work. But I knew it sat outside at the doctor's office and with AJ, so I'm not really surprised. And as I know from the Criterion I used to own, they are known for rust.

I'm glad you guys reached a mutually-agreeable deal, and I'm glad it went from one long-term friend to another. My friendship with AJ actually goes back to my dad having been friends with him from, I believe, when AJ was still in Allentown, PA. And we go back to..... some long-ago meet.

I think you owe me a ride in it one day! :cheers:

Tony Karsnia
09-08-2015, 03:57 PM
Mike,

Congratulations on your acquisition of yet another Criterion! I note that this car, bearing body number 74931 is only two units apart from 74933, which was your Norfolk, NE rig. It is also only 10 apart from my former car, 74921, which I sold in 1999 and is the orange & white one pictured above in Richard's post.

I have been informed by the fellow I sold 74921 to that this car is now undergoing restoration. Of all the cars I have owned over the years, there are two that I seriously regret selling and this is one of them. I'm not going to hijack your thread with details, but I'm pleased to say that we have recently added another Criterion to our collection as well.

I look forward to seeing photos of this great rig as you proceed with the exterior restoration.

Peter Grave
09-08-2015, 04:01 PM
Best of luck with it Mike what a bummer in Ca. and next to the ocean with that second line steel. The Tri State picture is the one in my yard two years ago went by it the other day there is less there now. What a shame!!!

Mike McDonald
09-08-2015, 04:05 PM
Congratulations, Mike. I'm glad I could help it get to a good home. (It's the second time I've found this car a good home - I connected Kevin and the WA fire department back in the day).

I was a little concerned with AJ's comment that it needed a lot of exterior work. But I knew it sat outside at the doctor's office and with AJ, so I'm not really surprised. And as I know from the Criterion I used to own, they are known for rust.

I'm glad you guys reached a mutually-agreeable deal, and I'm glad it went from one long-term friend to another. My friendship with AJ actually goes back to my dad having been friends with him from, I believe, when AJ was still in Allentown, PA. And we go back to..... some long-ago meet.

I think you owe me a ride in it one day! :cheers:
Steve: I will be glad to do that! "AJ" spoke very highly of you and your Dad, your support of his current-reoccurring medical show events in Maryland and about his days growing up in a fire department family from Scranton, PA., including many pictures of Scranton FD Ambulances including a beautifully (very well) equipped S&S. THANKS AGAIN for all your help and detailed information that helped "sell the deal" for me that the car had a very unique-well documented history that as you know is very important to any full restoration. MM

Bill Marcy
09-08-2015, 07:02 PM
Congratulations Mike! I think it makes all of us feel good, every time a professional car is saved from impending doom. And some of these ambulances are so rare, they deserve whatever it takes to restore them.

Steve Lichtman
09-09-2015, 08:39 AM
Mike, you are welcome. That's why we have the PCS, to help each other out.

Now folks, you asked for it: Here are Mike's photos of some of the rust-damaged areas on the Criterion. Yeah, outdoor life near the ocean wasn't good. Say what you will about second-line steel, but that hood and front fender came directly from GM.

Richard Vyse
09-09-2015, 11:28 AM
Well not as bad as I thought but certainly needs work. Calling Mr. Ed...... Appears it will require a new hood for sure.

John ED Renstrom
09-09-2015, 12:58 PM
hard to find a caddy or any gm except a Vaga in these years that they painted under the hood on. but were it all in the needs cut out and replaces stage those are the normal stops fr this set of years.

Peter Grave
09-09-2015, 01:25 PM
Mid 70s was not GMs finest hour we had Cadillacs Coupe Devilles in particular with roof from end of rear window to 1/4 panel rotted through when they were three years old everyone remembers the Chevrolet and GMC vanishing trucks and Suburbans. I junked my 85 Suburban plow truck last year no body left from your knees down. Best thing is out west there should be lots of desert Cadillacs for front parts. Hope you have a good MIG welder. Sure does not look as bad as I thought it would based on what we get back east here. Lokk forward to seeing progress reports and pictures good luck.

Richard Vyse
09-09-2015, 03:28 PM
This is what the ambulance looked like when Kevin Lynch first got it.

Kurt Arends
09-09-2015, 10:10 PM
Mike shouldn't have any trouble finding a straight, Arizona sun-baked '74 Cadillac Coupe deVille/Calais Coupe to give its life for the preservation of this rig. The entire front clip is a simple swap-out. Good luck Mike!!